Good news, Bridget Jones fans!
It's been nearly a year since there was an update on the upcoming third film in the series, and now, Universal Pictures has confirmed that Bridget Jones's Baby will start filming Oct. 2 in the U.K. Renée Zellweger will be back as the titular character and Colin Firth will reprise his role as Mark Darcy. Additionally, Sharon Maguire—who directed Bridget Jones's Diary in 2001—will be at the helm again.
Universal Pictures also confirmed that McDreamy has joined the cast. Yes, Patrick Dempsey will appear in his first role since leaving Grey's Anatomy. Last season, the actor's character, Dr. Derek Shepherd, died in a car accident. Dempsey is no stranger to the romantic comedy genre, of course, having previously starred in 1987's Can't Buy Me Love, 2002's Sweet Home Alabama, 2008's Man of Honor and 2010's Valentine's Day, among many other films. Meanwhile, Hugh Grant had previously announced that he will not return as Daniel Cleaver. "I decided not to do it. But I think they're going to go ahead and do it without Daniel," he told the U.K.'s Free Radio in October 2014. "The book's excellent, by the way, but the script is completely different—well, the script as I last saw it a few years ago."
In an interview with The Independent, Grant further explained his decision, saying, "I do think that if it was just me and a girl batting our eyelids at each other in a full-out romantic comedy, I would look a little sinister and weird at the age of 54."
Bridget Jones's Baby will be not be based on the novel Mad About the Boy, the third novel in the Bridget Jones book series. The plot will instead be inspired by columns written by author Helen Fielding. In the third movie, Bridget will find herself unexpectedly pregnant, but at this point, it's unclear if and when the father's identity will be revealed—meaning that Dempsey's character could be a rival lover in a similar vein to Grant's Daniel. The third installment in the movie series will bridge the gap between the 2004 film Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason and the 2013 book Mad About the Boy in which—SPOILER ALERT!—Mark is dead.
Fielding wrote the initial drafts of the screenplay with David Nicholls. The film will be co-financed by Universal Pictures, Miramax and StudioCanal. Working Title co-chairmen Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner will produce with Debra Hayward.
Ed Sheeran is also rumored to be appearing in the film as himself.
A release date has not been set.
(E! and Universal Pictures are both members of the NBCUniversal family.)